Financial concerns prevent youngsters attending celebration in Indonesia
A Catholic devotee attends the annual pilgrimage at St. Anthony's Church on Katchchativu Island in the northern waters off Jaffna in this file photo. A Catholic official has announced that Sri Lanka will not be sending a delegation to the Asian Youth Day celebrations in Indonesia because of financial problems. (Photo by Ishara S. Kodikara/AFP)
Young Catholics from Sri Lanka will not be attending the upcoming Asian Youth Day celebrations in Indonesia next month, a church official said.
"A group from Sri Lanka will not attend the event due to financial difficulties," Father Malcolm Perera, National Chaplain for Catholic Youth Federation said July 27.
"Several dioceses have informed me that they are unable to send delegation members because they and would-be delegates and difficulties are unable to cover the cost," said Father Perera who was only appointed to the Youth desk recently.
Around 3,000 young people from 26 Asian countries are expected to attend the Aug. 2-6 celebration in the Indonesian city of Yogyakarta, which has the theme "Joyful Asian Youth Living the Gospel in Multicultural Asia."
"Sri Lanka has not been able to send young people to Asian church events for several years," said Father Perera.
"We will not attend this time but we will strive to be able to do so the next time."
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